Since the copyright is not usually renewed on old newsreels and training film reels, you can copy and resell them. Turn them into DVDs and start selling.
This is one of those ‘business ideas’ that should do well using the Internet to sell items that trigger old nostalgia and memories. Offer a variety of different old newsreels and training films to the public. There are so many to choose from, you could categorize them according to years or subjects. This would depend entirely on how you decide to offer them.
Since you don’t need to pay for these, all you need to do is download them, copy them to DVDs and sell them to interested people that would like to buy them from you. The only investment that you will need to make is in the buying of DVDs, mailing envelopes, and a website to sell your films from. Of course, you will need to use a computer and have the proper software to download these films, and then burn them to a DVD.
It is a good idea to have a website that is easy to find and easy for your customers to use and order from you. You may want to include small clips from certain filmstrips that you want to sell. Choose a memorable name for your business so that people can remember and find your business easily.
It is important to make sure that you ship these DVDs out as quickly as you can. People don’t like to wait very long for items they purchase on-line. You can offer to send them by media mail, but this will take a long time for them to receive the DVDs. You are better off sending them priority mail, have the customers pay for this and they will receive what they order in 2 or 3 days.
You might be able to advertise these films in magazines too. Advertise filmstrips that you think readers of certain magazines might be interested in. This could cost you quite a bit of money though, so you should expect this.
You could make your services known by offering short clips on YouTube also. Just give the clips fun and enticing titles and people will be curious and take a look at them. Just use short clips from the various films that you will be offering.
When you burn the DVDs, make sure that you attach attractive labels to each that have your business name on them. It is a good idea to package them in nice cases too, with an attractive picture taken from the film showing on the case, if you can. The more professional they look when received the better your business will do.
Always include shipping receipts with the items you ship out. Include coupons when you ship merchandise, this always encourages customers to buy from you again. Your return customers are important to the regular growth of your business.